tv [untitled] February 20, 2012 12:00am-12:30am EST
later. i saw don kendall at the russian embassy last week, 90 years old now, former chairman but still heavily involved in russia, and he told me that pepsi now has from that beginning employs 30,000 people in russia, been expanding. >> they do vodka, too. >> that is how they get paid. >> let's get the next picture, please. tanya, tell us how you ended up meeting pat nixon. >> again, this was not planned, i was just working in front of the house, and all of a sudden she came up with a group, small
group and came up and wanted to see things and she was delightful. very very pleasant person. it was very nice to talk with her, it was easy, very nice, simple person, not complicated, not stand offish, i remember her distinctly as being very pleasant and the crowds liked her. stayed for a little while then she walked through. >> now, the next big moment of course is the -- let's look at the next picture. >> we took them in the studio the cameramen were ready, they stopped there, and were talking which became in effect a debate on, there were two debates, everybody thinks there was one. one in the rca color studio, and that was captured on television, and later on moved through. >> what was supposed to happen we're going to see this in a moment. what was supposed to happen here? what was supposed to happen we were going to show them color television, going around, the technicians and the other people
they really wanted to get them to talk, and stop and so they did everything with the cameras that they could, and we had briefed nixon on one thing, we said there is a new thing called tape, and it's called ampex tape. >> he would learn the lesson very well. >> and none of us had seen it, and so we said if something happens and this is the stop button, this is the replay button, and if you ever need it. none of us knew that. >> we're going to show you something in a moment. this is -- this is the uncut tape. this part of it was shown on television but none of it was shown all of it wants shown. i want to you think of opera,
part of it khrushchev and it is not translated. what happened before, this is an 18 minute tape we won't show you 18-and-a-half minutes actually, funny. we'll show you four minutes but i want to give you back story. khrushchev loves the camera and he has given an eight minute harrangue how the soviets are passing the united states. when the tape rolls the vice president is saying -- is trying to say something in response, this is all improvised, neither one expected to be debating. you won't understand khrushchev but you won't need to, what will happen is the vice president will say things like in a diplomatic way you know there are certain things you do better than we do and certain things
that we do better than you russians and at that point khrushchev will say no, that is not true. you will see -- he is clearly not waiting for the translation. so he is on automatic pilot. so this never appeared, this never appeared on television in the united states. but it gives you a sense of the drama that vice president nixon and his first memoir would call the fifth crisis. jason, let's roll the videotape, please. >> i've never seen this. >> it's quite something. >> i can only say this competition you have just described so effectively in which you plan to outstrip us and particularly in the production of consumer goods, if this competition is to do the best for both of our peoples, and for people everywhere, there must be a free exchange of ideas. there are some instances where you may be ahead of us, for example in the development of
the thrust of your rockets for the investigation of outer space. there may be some instances, for example color television we're ahead of you. for both of us to benefit [ russian ] . >> you never concede anything. [ russian ] >> wait until you see the picture. >> it would be interesting to know this program is now being recorded on ampex color tape and can be played back immediately and you can't tell that it isn't a live program. and -- [ russian snchl [ [ russian ] [ russian ] >> let's have a far more communication and exchange in this very area that we speak of. we should hear you more on our television. you should hear us more on
yours. [ russian ] >> you must not be afraid of ideas. [ russian ] . >> we are not afraid of ideas. >> then let's have more exchange. we all agree on that, right? now let's look at our picture. [ russian ] >> all that i can say from the way you talk and the way you dominate the conversation you would have made a good lawyer yourself. >> i just want to say something, tanya is so fluent, what did you pick up from khrushchev?
>> ongoing conversation i don't want to go back through all of it. basically khrushchev is saying we want to you know more about us, we want to know more about you. i came from a coal miners area, you're a lawyer, but i have to defend our point of view i have to tell -- i'm going to try to talk to you as defend things here in the soviet union. >> let's have a competition, let's see who will produce more goods for the people. >> we all know how that turned out. >> now we are going to listen to, unfortunately, person who should be on the stage with us is william safire passed away in 2009. the nixon library we started an oral history program in 2006 and fortunately we were able to do an interview with him for the library.
[ russian ] >> all that i can say from the way you talk and the way you dominate the conversation you would have made a good lawyer yourself. >> i just want to say something, tanya is so fluent, what did you pick up from khrushchev? >> ongoing conversation i don't want to go back through all of it. basically khrushchev is saying we want to you know more about us, we want to know more about
you. i came from a coal miners area, you're a lawyer, but i have to defend our point of view i have to tell -- i'm going to try to talk to you as defend things here in the soviet union. >> let's have a competition, let's see who will produce more goods for the people. >> we all know how that turned out. >> now we are going to listen to, unfortunately, person who should be on the stage with us is william safire passed away in 2009. the nixon library we started an oral history program in 2006 and fortunately we were able to do an interview with him for the library. where i asked him about the exhibition. you will listen to that little section from that oral history it's important because safire remembers this debate in the color studio, and color tv studio, and if that had been the debate this, would not have been a good experience for richard nixon. and so william safire will
explain the kitchen debate is an opportunity for richard nixon to come back at khrushchev, this was a disaster and captured on tv and as i said this was never this, uncut footage, there were parts shown but not the full thing. vice president nixon is uncomfortable, and khrushchev is relentless. let's listen to william safire in 2008 explain how we go from the ampex tv studio to the kitchen debate. and the role he played. >> tell us what you remember of the kitchen debate. >> it was my kitchen in a sense. i was the press agent. i was working for tex mccreary incorporated, a pr firm in new york, one of our clients, allstate properties, was a home builder, and we had the idea of presenting at the u.s. exhibition in moscow the typical american home. which was $11,000 house, similar
to what would you find in leavittown in the very beginning. so we built the house, and by we, the builder built the house and i was the press agent, went along. we went to moscow and vice president nixon opened the u.s. exhibit, and was walking along with premiere khrushchev and they went in the rca exhibit and had a debate. and khrushchev wiped up the floor with him. nixon was trying to be mr. nice guy, and he was getting clobbered. and as he came out of that session in the television studio, he realized that that's what is going to be shown back
home and showed him being pushed around trying to be mr. nice guy. and so, i signalled to major don humes, who was leading him through the u.s. exhibition, to come to the american exhibit, the housing exhibit. and there was a fence in between where he was walking and the typical american house. and so i got a jeep and we pulled up the fence, and nixon was signalled to come on in here. he immediately saw the opportunity. and went into the kitchen with khrushchev, and engaged in a debate. that debate in the kitchen i was a press agent and i thought to myself here's harrison salisbury sitting outside, for "the new york times" who will believe me what happened in that kitchen? but he was a great reporter, and
so i said to the russian guards, i want him in. they said what is he? i said he's the refrigeraor demonstrator. so we slipped him in. and then the ap photographer wanted to come in. i said he's the garbage disposal unit man. there was no garbage disposal unit in the kitchen so they wouldn't let him in. so he lobbed the expensive camera, he lobbed in the kitchen and i got the picture of nixon arguing with khrushchev, and there was a pushy russian trying to get in the middle of the picture and i kept trying to get him out but i couldn't get him out. so he's in the picture. that was bresnev. at the end of the session nixon
said we really put your kitchen on the mab, didn't we? and i said you bet. harrison salisbury said we'll call it the sokolniki summit. that is the name of the place in moscow the exhibition was going held. well, nobody elected sokolniki, i said you mean the kitchen conference, had the benefit o illiteration, he paid it back by calling it the kitchen conference. our kitchen became famous. >> you want to add something? >> bill and i met there, and later on we became partners in business in new york city. life time friends. terrific guy, wrote column, what happened there, i don't think it was that clear, is that the ap guy was in among the crowd and couldn't move and so he looked
at bill and bill signalled, he passed the camera along. >> jason, let's look at the picture. >> and then to bill to take it he was in the kitchen, so he took it and the guy is frantically waving, i sadsadooh head seen him, and bill had forgot to open the lens. so he took it again and he did and he got that picture and then the famous picture nixon used to show he was tough pointing to his chest. it was interesting. also, you'll see brezhnev off to the right. >> he's pushing. >> their left then, huh? >> he was always on their left. >> and then the man in the hat was the president of the soviet union, and mccoyan was in there, too, and so but milton
eisenhower isn't there because i put some of the politboro was in the next exhibit. i kept running back and forth and milton eisenhower got irritated he said where aren't you bringing them along? i said they are debating and kind of implied i should hurry it up so i went there and probably touched nixon's elbow to try to break it up and he just one glance i said "what a dope you are, no way" i said if you like to try i'll bring you back through the crowd. and he said no way.
>> we'll make clear this was totally spontaneous. >> absolutely. >> this was not planned. >> they don't realize there were two. the filmed one and -- >> which didn't go well. >> there was an illusion let's go see it again, what happened is he led them around to the ampex and he was very -- nobody including nixon or me or anybody else had ever seen a tape, this was the first demonstration of a taped show. it was so important that mcclellan decided that the ampex man should get on the plane and take it back to the networks. nothing happened for one day, for two days, there was a gap. and then about the third day, it appeared on television and i never knew until one day on an airplane i was sitting next to frank stanton of cbs and he told
me that they had it, great pressure from the white house and state department, to hold up until they had a chance to confer with the russians and tell them what we were going to do. >> the next picture please, jason? tanya, you were in another part of the house at the time of the debate, right? you were in the model house. >> the house was split in two, so they didn't come through it they stood at the front of it. >> we cut it in half, 20 and 20 feet. >> what strike me here, this is a little bit of an aside, hope you give me the moment to say this, normally if you have an american or let's say anybody's home, in the sense we had invited khrushchev to come to our house, we worked very hard
to put this together, and it's quite unusual when you have say a guest, a head of state come, to then turn darned and barrage you with every accusation you don't have this, this is not true, he was really pretty gauche, you saw it here, and i often thought why he would do this, it made good soviet publicity. hit all the russian papers. but i thought of another thing, the soviets not too far away had a permanent exhibition of the -- >> huge exhibit. >> going through a small world's fair, and it was full of big permanent pavilions, each demonstrating something, how good the farms were, how good agriculture was, how good something industrial was. >> space.
>> oh god, yes, so good, they were good on that. it was a big huge permanent exhibition you go through and spend like a day there looking at all this fun stuff and everybody knew, all the russians knew that this was all beautiful in the soviet exhibit, but it wasn't real. it hadn't happened. it was in the future. >> they had one of each. for that exhibition. >> it was never real. when khrushchev came and saw that i think he carried that thinking hey, this little house, nobody will have a house like this in america. a handful of people. people like this could have it, but the average american worker wouldn't have a house. and the cars, they were exotic cars. they didn't have this kind of stuff in the kitchen. even though he defended himself by saying we have all this stuff, too. but the truth is i don't think he believed it and certainly a lot of the russians didn't believe what we were showing was real, that the average american earning what, $5, $6, $7000 could afford a small house and a small car. the contrast i don't believe
these guys are showing what exists they are lying and put on this kind of thing like we do at our exhibit, we also fabricate all this stuff is going to come in the future. let's see the next picture, please. george, what effect do you think this had on all the russians that came to visit when they came here and saw? >> i agree with tanya, it was a great deal of skepticism. immodest as it sounds, i have to agree with mr. robinson as well because it's immodest, you could have gotten -- taken this us 75 guys with an orange crate without this great exhibition and placed us on the orange
crate and we would have had massive crowds and we talked about anything honestly, there were all sort of questions of life. on it one hand they were skeptical, on the other hand a huge achievement, and i think this had some relevance for -- let's have more exchanges. and i'll put in my two cents about nixon now, whom i never liked very much then this, i certainly liked him a lot less later. but, i'm going to praise him now i'm not so certain that this was totally unplanned, i'm not so certain khrushchev didn't have in mind to do this, because after all, khrushchev spent a good part of his life preparing to debate american capitalists. marxism was a cataclism. it was in his bones, there was a capitalist, and i have been told
all my life what is wrong with capitalism, of course he knew very little about it. but i want you to remark -- i want this audience because i myself see it, you know, i'm returning us to the cold war and the utter terror that each people was -- of the other people, these guys even in the studio, they are debating. a debate it is better than a nuclear war, there was some friendliness. khrushchev, blustering guy, deeply wanted peace in his bones for all his bluster, wanted peace, fired a million people from the armed forces. never gave him credit for that or anything. khrushchev put his arm around nixon. what i'm trying to say these exhibitions any exchange are
terribly important because other people as well as americans see the adversaries as evil. there are a lot of people who wanted good and we nevering on niced that. our propaganda more subtle, more effective that way. the russians didn't have things like movies about the americans invading the soviet union. our television affair was full of that stuff. that is what we watched at night. movies of the soviets coming and invading america. so we americans were plenty propagandized. >> i don't know i agree with that. >> i don't agree with that at all. difference of information, george, and i know it well, i
know what eisenhower wanted, set up the information agency only outward, he knew what hitler had done, turned inward, he never wanted that, he got smith, they put a bill in congress that only information from the united states government could go out of the country. and as a result, when kennedy was killed and usia made a beautiful film about kennedy to protect overseas, a great human cry that people wanted to see it in our theaters and congress had to pass a special dispensation, a law to let them do it. >> you're talking about official things. our newspapers and our television and our movies go back and look at those things now, you will see stuff that will curl your hair, there was plenty of stuff about how soviets wanted to invade us and ruin us. >> there was justification for this.
look at eastern europe, central europe, the russian army stationed all around. >> the russian army was stationed there, that is where the russian army is. we're not talking 1945 when the army took over, we're talking 1959, a huge change. americans did not recognize that huge change. all i'm saying here is let's not put -- let's not claim that we are virtue us and place all the blame for this abysmal ignorance on both sides on the russians. there was plenty of ignorance on both sides and plenty of imagery of the other side as evil. >> let me just say, there is one thing you brought up about the debate.
number one, i'm totally convinced being there from the beginning to the end is it was totally spontaneous always. all you're saying is his inward nature when the moment came allowed him to go ahead. >> i'm saying one more thing i felt nixon did very well considering that nixon wasn't prepared for this, i thought nixon, we were there for two weeks preparing this exhibition, working as labor and that sort of thing if you listen to soviet radio for two weeks and then heard nixon on his opening address, opening the thing it sounded like the voice of wisdom and reason. nixon, i have to say, thought quickly, thought on his feet and i thought he did remarkably well even in the studio. after all, he wasn't prepared for all this. i would like to know how i would have done in that situation. >> the other thing khrushchev and you have to really give him credit for this, khrushchev liked what he saw. what you don't know is that khrushchev most of the media don't know this, khrushchev came around about four times and i took him around at three of those and mcclellan was in st. petersburg or something, he loved the dome, i gave him a couple of bolts as souvenirs, he said we should have these, and the crowning touch came for my knowledge of what was happening with khrushchev and how he was
the one who was responsible for this exhibition being there is when the soviets asked me to come to the ministry of foreign affairs. again, i think mcclellan was out of town, and they asked me to come at the end of the exhibition and i said okay, i'll bring my counterpart from the embassy and they said no way, because the embassy was tough and hated the american embassy. i went in alone, there was the entire american section, i never really revealed this publicly of the soviet union, the green felt tables, the first question they asked smiling was do you think this was a success? and they were sort of a little bit uptight and i wondered and i said are you kidding?
i said it was 2,000% success. all your people coming in, people calling from the different. >> next picture. >> that is the kind of thing you had there. people just -- simultaneously said we were for it and made comments and it was the first time that we knew there had been confirmed there had been a fight between the khrushchevists and stalinists. when i came back to the embassy, he said go in the conference room and write a telegram i want to send this to the secretary of state and president. nobody was sure but khrushchev wanted the liberalization and he's a guy who started it. >> khrushchev would go to the united states after in the fall of 1959 and he would see and learn that the exhibit, the exhibition was a fair